What is it?
Tahini, at its best, is simply sesame seeds ground into a rich, smooth paste. The colour can vary from beige to a wet sand colour. The richest tasting is made from Humera seeds, which are the best quality sesame seeds grown in Africa.
What´s so special about it?
If you have followed any of my previous recipes, you’ll know that I don’t really buy into expensive fad foods, and I like to eat locally. But for Tahini, I make an exception. It´s not ridiculously expensive and is extremely diverse and has an abundance of benefits:
Its high in fat- I think we´ve all got the message that not all fat is bad for us! Tahini packs in more healthy fats per teaspoon than its nutty sister peanut butter. It contains Omega 3 which, is an excellent anti-flammatory, helping us to steer clear of chronic inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, arthritis and ulcerative colitis.
Vitamin B12- Feeling grouchy, or fatigued? You may be lacking vitamin B12. This much talked about vitamin regulates the nervous system, so is essential for your mood and behavior. Many studies are linking dementia to low B12 absorption.
Vitamin E- This is the anti-oxidant vitamin that will block free-radicals from damaging your cells and keep your body from aging. It keeps your skin, eyes and hair healthy too.
Magnesium & Calcium- Magnesium is great for insomnia and to calm you when you´re feeling a little anxious. Magnesium relaxes your muscles whilst Calcium complements its dear friend Magnesium by contracting muscles. Calcium strengthens and hardens our bones, whilst Magnesium provides flexibility and elasticity. They are the perfect balancing act, ensuring you’re not off kilter!
Iron- Deficiency can be extremely common, but don’t worry tahini will help boost your levels ensuring oxygen reaches all of our organs, which prevents us from being fatigued. When we are fatigued our bodies aren’t working properly, which can lead to brain fuzz to not being able to fight off infections.
Where can I buy it?
Many supermarkets now stock tahini, but if you want a pure, toasty tasting one, you may need to visit your health food store. It only requires a small investment and your jar will last for around a year (unless you wolf it, like I tend to, and in which case it will get used up way before!)
What can I do with it?
Most people tend to immediately think of hummus, which is my staple tahini dish. But you can make loads of yummy things with it. Here are just a few ideas:
Green Tahini Dip – blend tahini, coriander, garlic, lemon juice and a bit of water for an alternative to hummus or use as a mayo on your favorite sandwich
Tahini Flapjacks – An all time fave! Use any nuts and seeds that you have (I love pumpkin, chia, walnuts and almonds), dates and oats, all chopped and mixed together. Heat tahini and honey in a large pan to form a gooey paste before adding the dry mixture. Transfer into a greased baking dish and cook for around 15 minutes.
Hummus- Blend chickpeas, garlic, cumin, salt, olive oil and of course, tahini with a good squeeze of lemon juice. A tahini classic.
Tahini Date Balls – blend cashews (or other nuts), dates and tahini paste to make this tasty snack. I like to roll mine in chopped nuts, like almonds.
Tahini Toast – Move away from the Nutella! Spread tahini with honey, a pinch of salt and cinnamon on your toast instead.
Join us in 2018 on one of our 3 day retreats in Denia, Alicante and enjoy the benefits of yoga, sunshine, healthy food and good company. Life changing vacations…